James Montgomery (b. Irvine, Ayrshire, Scotland, 1771; d. Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, 1854), the son of Moravian parents who died on a West Indies mission field while he was in boarding school, Montgomery inherited a strong religious bent, a passion for missions, and an independent mind. He was editor of the Sheffield Iris (1796-1827), a newspaper that sometimes espoused radical causes. Montgomery was imprisoned briefly when he printed a song that celebrated the fall of the Bastille and again when he described a riot in Sheffield that reflected unfavorably on a military commander. He also protested against slavery, the lot of boy chimney sweeps, and lotteries. Associated with Christians of various persuasions, Montgomery supported missio… Go to person page >
I travel all the irksome night. J. Montgomery. [Journey of Life.] In Montgomery's Greenland, and other Poems, 1819, this poem of 21 stanzas of 4 lines is given as:—
"A night in a stagecoach: being a Meditation on the way between London and Bristol, Sept. 23, 1815."
It was repeated in his Poetical Works, 1828, vol. iii. p. 189, and again in later editions. In the Plymouth Collection, N. Y., 1855, stanzas i., xix.-xxi. are given as No. 1116. In the Boston Unitarian Hymns of the Spirit, 1864, the arrangement is, stanza i. from this poem, and stanzas ii. and iii. from another source.